The Big Bang Theory officially enters its winter break and will not be returning with new episodes until January. Despite being a consistent rating juggernaut for the network, it was canceled before the current outing even debuted. The reason for the sudden move remains a mystery but it's reportedly because of Jim Parsons' (Sheldon) decision to not to return for a 13th outing amidst a what could've been a massive payday for him and his co-stars. Now, on its 12th and final season, CBS is pulling all the stops to ensure that loyal viewers will get the satisfying ending to the fan-favorite sitcom.
The show ends 2018 on a high note with a Young Sheldon crossover episode where Iain Armitage (young Sheldon), Montana Jordan (young Georgie) and Lance Barber (George Sr.) will appear in the parent show via the discovery of an old VCR. The video is likely to reinvigorate Sheldon's drive to continue pursuing his and Amy's (Mayim Bialik) study on Super Asymmetry despite the fact that it was already debunked several decades ago.
With an optimistic end to 2018, fans of The Big Bang Theory are already clamoring to know what happens next in season 12. However, there's going to be quite a long wait. The sitcom, like most shows on major broadcasting channels, usually have a mandatory winter break, and this year is no different. CBS has yet to officially announce when The Big Bang Theory season 12 is returning but fans can expect it sometime next month - either on January 3 or January 10.
That would be four or five weeks of no new episodes for The Big Bang Theory - a bit longer compared the last couple of seasons where the hiatus only lasted for three weeks. In fact, the last time the show had a winter break this long was all the way back in season 8. Fans can, however, still get their TBBT fix as CBS is scheduled to fill out usual screening timeslot with reruns. During the extended Thanksgiving hiatus, the network aired replays of earlier episodes this season, and the same thing is expected to happen over the Christmas season. Considering that the show will continue to tread Amy and Sheldon's academic journey, this gives fans who weren't able to watch the show on a weekly basis the opportunity to catch up.
The show's cast and crew have already filmed their winter premiere this week (December 4) which means that there are only 13 more weeks of production left for the show (production works at the rate of an episode a week) before it officially wraps up its 12-season run. It's unclear whether there will be any additional filming before the holidays; prior to the two-week Thanksgiving gap, The Big Bang Theory only had a week separation between production and airing dates.
After The Big Bang Theory's winter break, there will likely still be some more gaps to come in season 12, allowing for major TV events and enabling the series to wrap up around May 2019. Nonetheless, with the show fastly approaching the midway point of their final season, fans can expect tighter storylines with fewer filler episodes moving forward.
The Big Bang Theory and Young Sheldon air Thursday nights on CBS.